Press Release: Why be Sexy Big Bird when you can be Hatshepsut?


Why be Sexy Big Bird when you can be Hatshepsut?


October 25, 2012 — Halloween costumes for women tend to fall into two categories: Sexy and Sexier. But a website called Take Back Halloween is bucking the trend.

Launched in 2010, the site is a free how-to guide with instructions on how women can dress up as famous queens, goddesses, and other figures from history.

“The response has been phenomenal,” says Suzanne Scoggins, who founded Take Back Halloween. The site logs millions of visits and, according to Scoggins, has been forced to make two server upgrades in the past week just to cope with the traffic. “There is a tremendous demand for this kind of thing,” she explains. “You would think from the media that everybody is out there wanting to be Sexy Big Bird. But in fact, a lot of women really don’t want that. They’re looking for a different approach.”

Take Back Halloween offers costume designs for Hatshepsut, the “female king” of Egypt, as well as Jezebel, Boudicca, the Queen of Sheba, Nzinga, Fu Hao, and dozens of others. Goddesses include Greek favorites, like Athena, as well as the Egyptian Isis, the Maya Ix Chel, the Aztec Chalchiuhtlicue, the Norse Freyja, and the Celtic Brighid. The “Notable Women” category covers an enormous range of women, from Enheduanna—the Sumerian poet who is the first known author in world history—to physicist Lise Meitner, the discoverer of nuclear fission.

And the site is still growing. Take Back Halloween has already launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund 15 new costume designs for 2013.

“We get hundreds of requests for new costumes,” says Scoggins. “We get emails all year long. There is a real demand for this.”